Black In Tech

Black Owned Beauty Brand CurlMix Launches Groundbreaking Crowdfunding Campaign


Husband-and-wife duo Kim and Tim Lewis – who famously turned down a Shark Tank offer – have launched another crowdfunding campaign for their Chicago-based beauty brand CurlMix.

Since walking away from Robert Herjavec’s $400,000 deal for a 20 percent equity stake, CurllMix has gone from strength to strength.

Significant achievements include launching in 460 Ulta Beauty stores, doubling of lifetime revenue from $13 million to $32 million in just two years, and raising $5 million in equity crowdfunding in April 2021. Now, they are offering their community a piece of the pie again.

The newly launched WeFunder campaign invites CurlMix enthusiasts, investors, and the broader community to be a part of the brand’s continued success. Various investment tiers offer exclusive perks and rewards, fostering a sense of community ownership and engagement.

How CurlMix Began

When Tim and Kin Lewis met at a second-period gym class at Morgan Park High School, they didn’t know their union would birth something special. Since coming together at the Southside of Chicago, the high school sweethearts are on their way to building one of the most successful Black-owned beauty brands.

“15 years later, we are on our way to building a black-owned Procter and Gamble, with over 100,000 customers, $13,000,000+ in lifetime revenue, and 30+ employees,” Kim Lewis wrote on her Linkedin. CurlMix was founded in 2015, as a do-it-yourself subscription box for curly hair.

Tim won $100,000 from his appearance on “Who Wants to be a Millionaire in 2013” and was used to kickstart the business. However, after two years of stagnant sales, the couple returned to the drawing board, hired advisors, and revamped their business model.

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The Rapid Growth of CurlMix

In January 2018, they turned their boxes into a haircare line, allowing them to earn $1M in sales in only 12 months. Then, the couple appeared on ABC’s show Shark Tank and turned down a $400,000 deal in 2019. Shortly after, the company raised $1.2M in a seed round led by Jeff Weiner, the former CEO of LinkedIn. The brand achieved $5M in gross revenue in the same year.

They struggled to raise their $5M Series A funding despite appearing on Forbes 30 Under 30, Oprah’s Favorite Things, and number 93 on the Inc. 5,000 list of fastest-growing companies in America. So, the couple turned to equity crowdfunding.

Kim credits the success of the raise to her community of supporters. “We took to crowdfunding in 2021 and our customers showed up for us. We raised more than $4.5M in a matter of days. Over 7,000 investors trusted us and we did not disappoint.”

The following year, CurlMix hit $10M in gross revenue. Also, they’ve nearly tripled their customer base from 100,000 to 260,000. A 30,000 sqft factory supporting CurlMix until they hit over $100M in revenue was opened. They purchased massive kettles and automated machines to fill tubes and bottles. The company also rebranded its packaging to stand out in the curly hair prestige category for CurlMix and 4C ONLY. Now, CurlMix has generated over $32M in lifetime sales.

CurlMix’s rapid financial growth is underscored by the brand’s impressive achievement of doubling lifetime revenue from $5M to $32M in just two years. This remarkable feat showcases the brand’s resonance in the market and the strong connection with its loyal customer base.

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$38M Valued Black-Owned CurlMix Wants You To Invest 

On February 1st, 2024, Kim and Tim launched another equity crowdfunding campaign for CurlMix. They are trying to raise $5M more. The company raised over $600,000 within 24 hours. With this investment, CurlMix wants to expand both CurlMix and 4C ONLY. This will include online growth, retail distribution growth, and a path to profitability.

Individuals can invest in CurlMix through the WeFunder campaign page. Various investment tiers offer exclusive perks and rewards, fostering a sense of community ownership and engagement. You can select your preferred investment level and you’ll be able to obtain equity. The minimum investment amount is $250, giving new investors a chance to get started with low barriers to entry. In addition, you can view the perks associated with each level of investment. The offer is open till February 9th, 2024.

Black women consistently face underestimation and inadequate funding, which creates significant obstacles. Women get less than 2% of the billions in venture capital, despite women making up 50% of the population, and Black women get less than .01%.

Not to mention, the Diversity and Inclusion funds from corporations diminishing or being eliminated altogether. Nonetheless, businesses like CurlMix are turning to an emerging funding source for capital.

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